Tag:Ken Williams
Posted on: December 22, 2011 2:05 pm

So are the White Sox really rebuilding?

Kenny Williams said the White Sox were rebuilding.

He never said they were trying to lose.

He definitely never said that the White Sox were looking at a long-term rebuilding project.

The White Sox's decision to sign John Danks to a five-year, $65 million contract, after spending the first part of the winter trying to trade their left-handed starter, certainly caught people by surprise. But it may not be the complete about-face that it at first seemed to be.

First off, Danks is still just 26. Even when Williams was talking about rebuilding, he was primarily talking about getting younger. A 26-year-old lefty who has averaged 195 innings a year over the last four seasons fits in perfectly, once you're sure you won't lose him to free agency in another year.

Second, the White Sox knew they were never going to be able to trade high-priced players like Alex Rios, Adam Dunn or Jake Peavy, and almost certainly weren't going to trade Paul Konerko, either. It's not like they were ever going to slash their payroll down to nothing.

Third, the word in both the international scouting community and among White Sox people is that the Sox could be very involved in the bidding for 26-year-old Cuban outfielder Yoenis Cespedes, who should become a free agent next month.

Fourth, the White Sox play in the American League Central. Yes, the Tigers look strong, the Royals are getting better and the Indians are trying harder, but this is not the toughest division in the game.

In fact, some White Sox people cringed when Williams began talking openly about "rebuilding."

"We are not rebuilding," one of them said forcefully.

Now, with Danks signed, some of those White Sox people were actually talking Thursday about what needs to happen for them to win in 2012.

Chris Sale needs to effectively take Mark Buehrle's spot in the rotation. Peavy needs to be better, a year further on from surgery.

Dunn and/or Rios need to bounce back.

Oh, and someone needs to take Sergio Santos' place as closer.

The Santos trade, to Toronto for pitching prospect Nestor Molina, is the only deal the Sox have made so far in their "rebuilding" winter. It fit the rebuilding mode, although it is worth remembering that while Santos has just two years in the big leagues, he is a year and a half older than Danks.

Perhaps the White Sox will still trade Gavin Floyd. It still wouldn't surprise anyone if they deal Carlos Quentin, especially with Dayan Viciedo waiting (and maybe Cespedes, too).

But a complete rebuilding?

No, that's the team on the other side of town.
Posted on: February 24, 2010 3:19 pm

Twitter is reality for Ozzie, Sox

GLENDALE, Ariz. -- Only the White Sox. Only Ozzie Guillen.

Yes, another Guillen controversy, although this one seems pretty mild. The Sox manager started using Twitter this week, and today he had to answer for it to general manager Ken Williams.

Guillen, tweeting at @OzzieGuillen, told Williams that he only planned to post items about his own life, and not about the White Sox. His Sox-related posts so far have been pretty tame, telling his 6,000 followers that Carlos Quentin and Alex Rios have arrived in camp, wondering why free-agent Jermaine Dye doesn't have a job and saying that after three days of spring training, "I'm already boreddddddd."

"People are acting like I murdered someone or stole someone's money," Guillen said, referring to the media uproar his Twitter account caused in Chicago.

Guillen said he would stop tweeting if Williams or club chairman Jerry Reinsdorf had a big problem with it, adding that he's not making any money on Twitter.

"If there was money involved, I'm pretty sure I'd get fired, because I'd fight for it," Guillen said.

Just another day with the White Sox.

"We're never boring," Williams said.

And maybe that's why MLB network has planned a reality TV show focusing on the White Sox. The Twitter episode won't be part of the show, though, because it doesn't start until July.

"Those guys don't have any idea what they're in for," Williams said.

Or maybe they do.

"Why doesn't everyone have a reality TV show or a Twitter?" Williams asked. "Why can't we just concentrate on playing baseball?"
Category: MLB
Posted on: September 1, 2009 10:18 am

Finally, White Sox are rebuilding

White Sox general manager Ken Williams saw that the core of his team was aging. He knew that in order to win another World Series, the White Sox had to turn their team over.

He tried to do it without ever admitting to rebuilding.

"You know me, and you know (manager Ozzie Guillen)," Williams said in a conversation before spring training. "You know how competitive we are. Do you think we could go into a season where we didn't think we'd have a chance?"

So the White Sox went for it -- sort of.

They never put all their resources into this year's team. They made all their moves with at least one eye on the future.

And when they got to the end of August and realized that this team wasn't going to win, they pulled the plug. They traded away Jim Thome and Jose Contreras, and let it be known that they were willing to move Jermaine Dye, Scott Linebrink and others, too.

Some have portrayed this as an abrupt change in plans, but really it's not.

Yes, it's true, the White Sox took on two big salaries when they traded for Jake Peavy and acquired Alex Rios on waivers. But Peavy was always about the future more than about the present, and Rios was a player Williams always wanted as part of the White Sox team he was trying to build. Adding Peavy and Rios never meant the White Sox were "going for it" this year.

The Peavy deal made little sense in the context of 2009, anyway. As part of the package to get him, the White Sox gave up Clayton Richard, who was in their rotation at the time. They knew that Peavy wouldn't be ready to pitch until late August at the earliest, but they were willing to give up a month's worth of starts -- because they saw Peavy as the ace of the team they were building for 2010 and beyond.

Will that team of the future have a better be good enough to win?

It's too early to say that. What we do know now is that this 2009 White Sox team wasn't good enough.

The Sox tried to rebuild and contend at the same time. Now they're hoping they can go 1 for 2.
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